With the official launch of Windows 8.1 Microsoft also announced that Windows would be free to devices and phones less than 9″; which is a huge incentive for OEMs to adopt the platform. Now Microsoft have taken it a step further announcing a new low cost version of Windows called “Windows With Bing”:
As we move forward, many of these lower cost devices will come with a new edition of Windows called Windows 8.1 with Bing. Windows 8.1 with Bing provides all the same great experiences that Windows 8.1 offers with the Windows 8.1 Update, and comes with Bing as the default search engine within Internet Explorer. And of course customers will be able to change that setting through the Internet Explorer menu, providing them with control over search engine settings. This new edition will be only be available preloaded on devices from our hardware partners. Some of these devices, in particular tablets, will also come with Office or a one-year subscription to Office 365.
Basically this new version of Windows just gives OEM’s a cheaper alternative, and will drive down the price of the final hardware; without affecting much of the software performance (if you’re bothered enough by Bing as your default search engine you can always change it).
Over all a clever move by Microsoft.